The US is threatening to ask the World Trade Organisation to form a panel to adjudicate on a row with the European Union over technology tariffs.
The Americans and Europe have reportedly remained deadlocked over the issue since the US filed a case in May alleging that the EU is violating the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) by imposing high tariffs on certain products, such as a 14% levy on large flat-screen monitors.
The EU denies it is in breach of the ITA, a 70-nation agreement dating from 1996 that prohibits duties on a range of technology products.
The clash over how to interpret the ITA comes after last week's collapse of the Doha round, which was aimed at removing tariffs from a wide range of industry sectors.
The US has to decide whether to press ahead with the next stage of the dispute-resolution process, which would be to ask the WTO to form a panel to judge the case.
Neither side in the dispute is making any official comment in the midst of the litigation, but the US could take the next step as soon as 29 August, when the WTO's dispute settlement body meets.